Person:Thomas Holbrook (28)

Thomas Holbrook
b.Abt 1624 England
m. 28 May 1656
  1. Hannah HolbrookEst 1656 -
  2. Nathaniel Holbrook1657/58 - 1676/77
  3. Thomas Holbrook1659 - 1717
  4. Eliazer Holbrook1660 -
  5. John HolbrookAbt 1665 - 1740/41
  6. Experience HolbrookAbt 1667 -
m. 26 Jan 1668/69
  1. Patience Holbrook1669/70 - 1740
  2. Hopestill Holbrook1671 - Bef 1704
  3. Bethiah HolbrookAbt 1673 - Bef 1704
  4. Susannah HolbrookAbt 1675 - 1717
  5. Nathaniel Holbrook1677 -
Facts and Events
Name Thomas Holbrook
Gender Male
Birth? Abt 1624 England
Marriage 28 May 1656 Medfield, Norfolk, Massachusetts, United Statesto Hannah Shepard
Marriage 26 Jan 1668/69 Medfield, Norfolk, Massachusetts, United Statesto Margaret _____
Death[1][2] 11 Apr 1705 Sherborn, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States
  1. Baldwin, Thomas W. Vital Records of Sherborn, Massachusetts, to the Year 1850. (Boston, Mass: New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1911)
    p. 208.

    HOLBROOK, Thomas Sr., [died] Apr. 11, 1705.

  2. Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States. Middlesex County, MA: Probate File Papers, 1648-1871. (American Ancestors, 2014)
    Case 11678:Thomas Holbrook 1705.

    Will of "Thomas Holbrook of Sheirborn ... sen'r" dated 15 May 1704, proved 23 Apr 1705, names sons Thomas, Eliezer, Nathanell, John; daughters Experienc Makinytush, Hannah Battle, Patienc Layland, Susanna; deceased Daughters children bathiah mors [to the boy, to the two girls]. Son Eliezer to be executor.
    4 May 1705: Received of Eleazer Holbrook Executor ... our Hon'd Father Thomas Holbrook Sen'r late of Sherborne. Signed by Will'm Mackingtush ["of Dedham"], Experience Makintosh, Hopestill Lealand, Patince Lealand, Daniel Morse, Susanah Morse.

  3.   The secondary literature on Thomas Holbrook is totally confused, and probably should be ignored.

    It starts with Savage who clearly confuses an older Thomas of Weymouth with the Thomas of Medfield, so shows him having children prior to leaving England, as early as 1617, settled in Weymouth, but moved to Dorchester then to Medfield, while his will of 1677 insists he is still of Weymouth. He allegedly married Experience Leland but his will names a wife Jane (presumably the same Jane who, according to Chamberlain's Weymouth Genealogies, was also named in the passenger list coming from England). The will Savage is talking about is clearly not the will of Thomas of Medfield but he is attributing facts about Thomas of Medfield to him and has no entry for a Thomas of Medfield. (Savage adjusted this in his corrections in later volumes by removing the references to Thomas of Medfield from the entry for Thomas of Weymouth, adding a short entry for Thomas of Medfield that noted his marriage to Hannah but little else. Yet his errors are given perpetual life by those like...)

    Morse does his best to make a bad situation worse. He gives Thomas of Medfield 4 wives: Experience Leland, Hannah Shepard, Margaret Bowker, and Mary Rogers, yet this Thomas' will actually names no wife. Possibly the first and last are mistakes (see comments on children for first, last may have been the second wife of son Thomas - more research needed - who appears to have had two wives named Mary, the alleged marriage of the father Thomas to Mary Rogers in 1693 is a year after the first wife Mary of son Thomas died, and son Thomas is having children by a wife named Mary in 1705).

    The will gives some good evidence for attributing children. It shows that Experience m. William McIntosh. He was born, it appears, in 1665/66. They have a son John in 1694. All this suggests a birth in the neighborhood of 1670 for Experience. But Morse lists Experience first of all children, assuming she belongs to purported wife Experience, even before Abigail 1648. This clearly doesn't fit. The age of her husband and the birth of her child clearly put her in the period from 1656 to 1690 when Thomas was married to Hannah and then to Margaret.

    Morse lists the second child as Abigail. Abigail is baptized in Dorchester in 1648. The record in Dorchester is found, but with no parents named. She is thought by sources covering Richard Holbrook to belong to him, marrying Joseph Hawkins (here). Also in Dorchester is baptized a Mary in 1650. She is found in the family of Richard, and Morse lists no daughter Mary for Thomas. There is no Abigail named in Thomas' will. It looks like Abigail does not belong in Thomas' family.

    The third child listed by Morse is Hannah. Daughter Hannah m. 1678 John Battle. The marriage is recorded and it is confirmed by the father's will. This would suggest a birth in the 1650's. Her name Hannah would suggest she is a daughter of wife Hannah, so perhaps born late 1656. At this point, Hannah is the only child that even hints at the need for a marriage prior to Hannah in 1656, but physically, she could be Hannah's child, especially if she was born less than 9 months after the marriage.

    We have now accounted differently for all three of the children that are traditionally attributed to Experience Leland. The loss of a daughter named after her is especially costly, and we are left wondering what evidence was ever there to suggest the first marriage occurred? No marriage record or death record seems to be found. Even if the marriage could be validated, there is little evidence of any issue resulting from it.